This is a guerrilla photo shoot organised by the Mirvish PR department to celebrate the end of Dirty Dancing's long run in Toronto (and promote the fact that it has been held over for one further week due to strong demand)
Yonge-Dundas is one of the busiest intersections in the city. So busy in fact that it is the only one that has a special mode every third light change where pedestrians can cross not only in all four directions at once but diagonally as well.
This means the pedestrian flow is like a box with an X in the middle every third light, and we (Tara from the Toronto Star, myself and a CTV camerawoman) are going to shoot the famous 'lift' scene from Dirty Dancing right in the middle of the intersection.
We time it and the light lasts for 28 sec. Check the wind direction, because we don't want it going up the skirt of the actress and having every perv slapping it on YouTube 5 minutes later.
Mark a spot by the manhole cover for the couple to do the lift (she only requires three steps for enough momentum for him to lift her above his head at arms length).
Shoot a couple test shots of them doing the lift in the square off to the side to get exposure right.
I started out using a flash to relieve the shadows, but the camera locking up until the flash recycles is a really big handicap in a 28 sec. shoot, so I just turned it off and went without.
Finally at the appropriate light we charge out into the intersection.
The actress is aloft, towering over pedestrains who are either walking by like nothing strange is happening or stopping to gawk, Cameras and camcorders come out in the crowd, a police officer nonchalantly watches, and the PR people count down the seconds. With five seconds to go we all race for the curb with crazed taxi drivers revving their engines in hair trigger anticipation of the green light.
We did it three more times. A quirky, fun shoot for all involved. Even the ENG girl, who hates shooting 'fluff', ended up enjoying it :)
Olympus E3 w/ Digital Zuiko 9-18mm lens @ 200 ISO
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